7 Quick Tips for 7 Servings of Fruits and Veggies a Day

A diet high in vegetables and fruit promotes fat loss. It fills you with fiber without a ton of calories. AND a recent large study out of Britain found that mental well-being and happiness were higher among people who ate about 7 daily servings of fresh fruits and veggies!! Pass the salad!   To be honest, a lot of people are intimidated by the thought of it, especially if it is far from what they normally eat.  If you have a busy schedule and find it easy to stop for a Starbucks and a ding dong for breakfast, drive through the local fast food place for a quick lunch and take home barbecue or chinese for dinner, then you are in the majority of the standard american diet (SAD). But it is SO simple to add fresh foods, you will be surprised.  And there is no right or wrong here, it is just what suits you.  You will find though, that the more fresh fruits and veggies you eat, the more you will be willing to try new ones.  So start where you are and work your way to a wider variety.  The more colorful and diverse your diet, the higher amount of micronutrients you will feed your body.  So, don’t sweat the fact that you can’t grow your own veggies and sprout your seeds and drink apple cider vinegar straight from the bottle like your crunchy neighbor. Do what you can, where you are.  Fresh food can be fast food too! Here are 7 quick tips for 7 servings (especially good for those with picky kids!):      1 – Store pre-chopped raw veggies in the fridge for snacks and dip in hummus.  It’s easy enough to buy the veggies already chopped and pre-made hummus (look for oil-free)      2 – Start dinner with a small salad.  Mix it up, it doesn’t have to be “lettuce”.  Try shredded cabbage with raisins and sunflower seeds with an orange vinaigrette, or a bowl of thinly sliced cucumber with sliced sweet onion with a little apple cider vinegar and maple syrup,  how about spiraled zucchini with grape tomatoes, pine nuts and a dressing made from balsamic vinegar, dates, garlic and oregano.  Mix it up – color is fun to eat! The fiber will fill you too, so you eat less of the empty calories.      3 – Have an afternoon snack between lunch and dinner everyday as a pick me up (instead of that afternoon candy bar or soda ;D) *** a little almond butter (fat and a protein) with an apple (healthy carb!) – it will hold you over, wake...

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Are you ready for some football???

  If your house is anything like mine, when Superbowl Sunday is on the horizon, there is always a lot of anticipation for the football game, no matter who’s playing.  And if we are planning to have friends over, the frenzy includes, what the heck am I going to serve?  Chili is always part of the deal, the easiest to make ever meal.  But we want snackeroos too . . . and we want TASTY food! This recipe is one I have made for about 15 years now.  A friend of a friend brought a version of it to a Dirty Santa party one year, and I don’t even remember her name now, but THANK YOU to her because this is a staple for special occasions in our home!  There will be months that go by and I’ll be scrambling to make something to bring to a party or something and this will come to mind, and it’s always a no-brainer . . . and I ALWAYS go home with an empty dish.  Just think — creamy cream cheesy, spicy sweet with a little crunch, with a savory aftertaste, you are in for a heavenly treat!  If you have the time, make your own cream cheese from soaked cashews, and make your own chutney.  Otherwise, the recipe is listed with store bought ingredients so you can throw this baby together quickly.     Ingredients: 1 jar Major Grey’s Mango Chutney (if you’re in a rush use this, if not: make your own with less sugar) 1 tub whipped Go Veggie Cream Cheese 1-2 c. finely shredded romaine lettuce 1/2 c. unsweetened shredded coconut 1/2 c. roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped (if you are raw vegan, use raw nuts of your choice) 1/4 finely diced chives (can substitute with scallions) Directions: This is SO easy.  Smear the creek cheese directly onto serving platter.  Next, smear chutney directly on top of cream cheese, leaving an inch of the cream cheese not covered all around the edge, for looks.  Then top with remaining ingredients, in order. Serve with a melange of crackers and fruits and vegetables, and you’re good to go!   The flavors of this can easily be changed, like using strawberry conserve instead of the mango chutney and eliminating the chives and adding in mint and replace the peanuts with pistachios.  That would remove most of the savory flavors and it would be more like a dessert dip!  YUM!  I think we may have to give that a try 😉  ...

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Forbidden Soup
Nov22

Forbidden Soup

Forbidden Soup (makes 6-8- servings) 1 ½ c. forbidden rice 4 c. shitake mushrooms, sliced 1 large leek, sliced 4 c. water 4 c. vegetable broth 2 cans no sodium fire-roasted tomatoes (can use favorite tomato sauce instead) 2 c. giant fava beans, dry, soaked overnight or canned, no sodium Mache Rosettes Raw Cashews Bring water to low rolling boil and add forbidden rice. When rice is al dente, add beans and broth and continue low boil for 15 minutes until beans are soft. Toss in mushrooms, leeks and tomatoes. When serving, portion into bowl, place 1 cup mache on top of soup, and 2 T. cashews. Don’t forget to lick the...

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Banana Chocolate Chip Bread
Nov22

Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

Banana Chocolate Chip Bread INGREDIENTS: One loaf, minus the ends of Ezekiel Cinnamon Raisin Bread 1 cup vegan chocolate chips or 1/2 cup cacao chips, your choice 4 medium ripe bananas, sliced ½” thick 3 cups almond milk 5 tablespoons arrowroot powder or tapioca flour 3/4 cup maple syrup 2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 2 – 9 x 5 loaf pans with coconut oil. Place cubed bread in the pans and set aside. In a small bowl whisk together milk and the arrowroot powder till no lumps remain. Add maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg and whisk to combine. Pour over cubed bread and stir to coat every piece. Allow to sit for at least 15 minutes for liquid to soak into bread. Depending on what kind of bread you use and how stale it is, add a little more milk and allow more soaking time till every piece of bread is saturated and there’s a little bit of extra liquid. Mixture should look mushy and wet. Fold in chocolate chips and bananas, I use my hands to squish the bananas. If you have kids, this can be a fun part of the recipe! Pour mixture into loaf pans. Bake 30-35 minutes till top is puffed, slightly browned and feels firm. Allow to cool slightly before slicing and serving. Always a hit when served...

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Red Pepper Hemp Pesto
Nov22

Red Pepper Hemp Pesto

Red Pepper Hemp Pesto: this is based on Brendan Frazier’s from his book “Thrive” – a great book for a vegan athlete! 2 cloves garlic 2 red bell peppers, cored and seeded 1/2 c. fresh basil 2 T. hemp seeds 2. T. hemp seed oil 2 T. nutritional yeast 2 T. sesame seeds Blend all ingredients until sauce-like.  I like mine a little chunky.  This can be used as a sauce over pasta, if you eat pasta instead of tomato sauce, you can dip raw veggies like sliced cucumber, or zucchini crisps.  You can dip baked fries in it instead of ketchup or use sprouted whole grain pitas and use this in place of tomato sauce, sprinkle with onion, mushrooms – whatever your favorite veggies are –  and top with a small amount of almond cheese, if you use those types of products for a spin on pizza.  I keep this in fridge all the...

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Raw Zucchini pasta with Marinara sauce
Nov20
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